In the 80’s there were scary end of the world tribulation films. In the 90’s we were reminded to not be “Left Behind”. In the 10’s we have over 62,000 people on Facebook “liking” that Jesus isn’t attending the Rapture event scheduled by someone for 21 May 2011, or is that 21 October 2011, or what was that date he first gave back in 1994…? Back in 30’s Jesus Christ told us Himself, over and over that He is coming back, sometime, anytime, when we least expect it.
So we can’t say we haven’t been notified that Jesus will becoming back. While we should be excited about His return, I think many of us secretly want to say “Don’t come back yet Jesus, I’m not ready!”
We’ve taken Matthew 25:31-46 to heart and we diligently feed the hungry, clothe the naked and give to “the least of these” so we can give to Christ. We work hard to have an ever-deepening relationship with God. We confess our sins daily. All our family, friends and neighbours are saved. We try our best to live our faith, to live a life ready for Christ’s return. Yet…
Yet, we’re not ready for Jesus’ return (or our death, whichever comes first). We feel unready. We don’t want it to happen soon. Today would NOT be a good day to be raptured. Oh, we’re as spiritually ready as we can be. No, there’s other reasons why we feel like today won’t work for us.
If you grew up in the church your reasons for not being ready may have been like – Jesus can’t come back because… I haven’t had a boyfriend yet, got my first pony, been kissed, finished high school, had a life and done something. As we get older our because become… I haven’t got married, had kids, grandchildren, become a CEO, sung on Broadway, seen Paris, hit middle-aged, gone bald and brought a sports car…
It’s the experiential things that keep us from being ready. The goals and dreams that we hold dear are the reasons we want Jesus to delay His return so we can. The things we want to do, accomplish, achieve.
Is this selfishness? Is this a fear that if we don’t accomplish those things we are less than others, are a failure, have missed out? Or is it simply a lack of faith?
The thing Jesus most pulled up His disciples on was “Oh, ye of little faith.” It’s not bad to dream and aspire to do great things with your life, it’s not good when your desires to do these things causes you to have a bad attitude towards Jesus about it.
I have a feeling that many of us who want to put Jesus’ return on hold until we’ve ticked everything off on our dream list, can hold a little bit of fear, resentment or even anger towards God that maybe, just maybe He won’t let us do these things. We don’t look to the rapture with excitement. We fear that He will short change us by not allowing us to do those things.
In these feelings are a lack of faith. A misunderstanding of the vastness, omniscience (all knowing), omnipotence (all powerful), ness of God. We fear that God will make a mistake if He doesn’t let us do what we want to do. Yet God knows all things and He does NOT make mistakes. He knows what we should and shouldn’t experience in this life. He knows when the perfect time is for us to go to heaven – via rapture or via death.
Hey, maybe you and I will get to do all those things on our bucket list and our dreams will all be fulfilled and we will die peacefully some night after our age hits three figures. Or maybe we are raptured tomorrow with all the boxes unchecked on our dreams list. Either way, we need to trust God, to have faith in Him, that He is in control. If we follow Him every day, then each experience we do or don’t have, will be according to His plan for us, to become the person we need to be for all eternity in heaven. That is what counts, eternity, not this short stay on earth.
So give it up. Whatever has been holding you back in your excitement about the return of Christ. Whatever makes you want to say “Don’t come yet Jesus, I’m not ready!” Give it up, give it to Jesus. Trust Him with your dreams. Trust Him whether you get them or not. Don’t let fear and lack of faith hold you back. Give it all to Jesus and be 100% ready to say “Come Lord Jesus, come!”
Have you ever felt like you aren’t ready for Jesus to return? Do you agree with my assessment? Write your thoughts below.
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